SportSnip℠ Vasectomy FAQ
What men - and their wives - want to know. Here is a checklist of some of the most frequently asked questions (in no specific order), and the answers that doctors provide.
A man and his spouse should carefully consider what they want to know before deciding about a vasectomy. It's important that every couple to be fully informed and aware.
The more time a couple spends in becoming educated about a vasectomy or any procedure, for that matter the greater confidence they will have in making a decision that is right for them and their situation.
The following Questions and Answers may be helpful as a checklist to what is commonly asked by others.
BASICALLY, WHAT IS A VASECTOMY?
A vasectomy is a minor surgical procedure used by urologic surgeons to make a man sterile. It is one of the most popular forms of contraception in the United States and worldwide, and is regarded as safe, simple and highly effective. A vasectomy is performed by cutting the vas deferens, the small tube that carries sperm from the man's testicles to become part of his semen. Although the man continues to have sexual intercourse and climax as before, his semen does not contain sperm and he cannot father a child following a vasectomy.
WHAT IS A"NO-SCALPEL" VASECTOMY (NSV)?
The “No-scalpel” is a special technique for performing a vasectomy that often results in less swelling and pain than the traditional method. The procedure itself is similar to a traditional vasectomy in many respects but it is done without incisions or stitches. This generally results in faster healing.
HOW LONG DOES THE NO-SCALPEL PROCEDURE AND RECOVERY TAKE?
The procedure itself usually takes about 20 minutes, sometimes less. However, including the office routine, paperwork and preparation, the total time in a doctor's office may be about an hour. The procedure is likely to produce tenderness, discomfort and slight swelling in the first two or three days afterwards. Recovery time after a no-scalpel vasectomy is usually less than after a traditional vasectomy (Follow your doctor's instructions carefully, take your time and use the schedule that is right for you.)
HOW EFFECTIVE IS A NO-SCALPEL VASECTOMY?
A vasectomy of any type ranks among the most effective means of protection from pregnancy. Although no procedure is totally safe or effective, the failure rate for a vasectomy is less than one percent. (By comparison, the failure rate for latex condoms is 12 percent or more; for diaphragms, it's 18 percent.) Couples who want a highly reliable and permanent form of contraception often opt for a vasectomy where the success rate is over 99 percent.
DOES IT WORK IMMEDIATELY?
No, any vasectomy does not make you sterile right away, and you'll want to continue using some other means to guard against pregnancy until your doctor tells you otherwise. Immediately after a vasectomy, active sperm remain in the semen for a period of time. It may take 15 to 20 ejaculations and several weeks before your semen is free of sperm. Your doctor will test the semen, perhaps several times over several weeks, and let you know when you can safely consider the vasectomy to be complete. This may be as long as two months.
WHAT HAPPENS TO THE SPERM?
This is a mystery to some people, but the answer is both normal and natural. The body absorbs unused sperm cells normally - whether or not you've had a vasectomy. After the procedure, the testicles will continue to produce sperm, but they will not leave the body in the semen. They dissolve and are simply and naturally absorbed by the body.
WILL MY SEX LIFE BE AFFECTED?
A vasectomy only blocks sperm and does not affect your sexual drive, your ability to have an erection, orgasm or ejaculation or your ability to have and enjoy sex. Sperm is only a small fraction of the total liquid in your semen. The amount of fluid, intensity - even color and texture - does not appear to change when sperm is absent. Male hormones continue in the bloodstream, and secondary characteristics (such as beard or voice) do not change. Some couples say their relationship is improved by not having to worry about contraceptive techniques or unplanned pregnancy.
ARE THERE RISKS OR COMPLICATIONS?
Yes, as with any surgical procedure, there could be complications and you should ask your doctor to go over these carefully with you. However, the no-scalpel vasectomy ranks among the safest procedures and the majority of complications, if any, are usually minor and easily treated.
CAN A VASECTOMY BE REVERSED?
You should consider any vasectomy to be permanent. There are delicate microsurgical operations that may be able to reverse the effects of a vasectomy, but there is no assurance that the flow of sperm can be restored or pregnancy will result in every case. The likelihood of success can vary greatly depending on individual circumstances, including how much time has passed since the vasectomy. If you are seriously considering a vasectomy, it's best to assume that it will be a permanent change.
• Be prepared to ask a lot of questions; informed decisions are best.
• Always discuss your issues with the doctor of your choice.
• A vasectomy is a simple, safe and highly effective procedure.
• The No-Scalpel method is often favored over the traditional vasectomy.
• Results are not immediate; it may be weeks before sterility is complete.
• Vasectomy does not change your ability to have an erection or enjoy sex.
• The procedure is safe, risks are low and complications are rare.
• A vasectomy should be considered permanent and may not be able to be reversed later.
Contact us to get answers to your important questions or schedule an appointment.